Motivation Articles

25 Ways You Could Get Back on Track Today

Don't Give Up on Your Goals!

Not long ago, you were energetic and determined to start your healthy lifestyle. Starting with enthusiasm and hope, you watched your food intake diligently, exercised like it was going out of style, and even avoided the temptation that seemed to lurk around every corner. You were confident that you were going to reach your goals once and for all!

Then certain tragedy struck! You ate an extra piece of birthday cake. Realizing you had “blown” your diet, you ate another and another and couldn’t get it together the next day either. Or worse, you missed one workout, and that turned into a whole week away from the gym. After that, your momentum to start over again was gone, and your gym bag hasn’t left the closet since.

Every time you misstep on your healthy journey, you have two choices: to keep walking backwards, which will surely take you even further away from your goals; or to accept your lack of perfection as normal and forgivable, and take not one, but two positive steps down the path that brings your closer to the future you want.

If you’re reading this, you might have been walking backwards for a while. But instead of waiting for the next day, week, month or even year to overhaul your habits, start TODAY. And start small. You can’t go from the recliner to running or from burgers to Brussels sprouts in an afternoon. But you can do one, two or even a handful of small things that will help you regain your momentum for healthy living.

When you feel like getting back on track is overwhelming, try one (or more) of these small steps each day.

1. Try a short workout. Even five minutes is better than nothing. For ideas browse our video library or workout generator.

2. Try a new recipe. Cooking healthy foods can be fun and it never has to be bland.

3. Eat a healthy breakfast. Your morning meal sets the stage for the rest of your day, so start if off right! Get lots of breakfast ideas here.

4. Drink your water. Try to aim for 8 cups each day and you’ll feel the difference!

5. Look at Motivational SparkPages. Seeing how others overcome similar struggles and obstacles can be a great source of motivation.

6. Track your food today. No matter how it adds up, you’ll learn from it.

7. Update your SparkPage. It’s a visual way to track your ups and downs, but also your progress.
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About The Author

Nicole Nichols Nicole Nichols
A certified personal trainer and fitness instructor with a bachelor's degree in health education, Nicole loves living a healthy and fit lifestyle and helping others do the same. Nicole was formerly SparkPeople's fitness expert and editor-in-chief, known on the site as "Coach Nicole." Make sure to explore more of her articles and blog posts.

Member Comments

  • Thank you, Love this - 11/24/2015 1:02:04 PM
  • Thank you needed this today really !!!!! - 10/4/2015 11:27:41 AM
    I suggest trying out the Fitbit Surge it has all the options tracks everything and quite comfy of the wrist. Checkout this review http://www.goodsh
    ealthnfitness when you are able to track your progress its very motivating - 9/29/2015 2:40:26 AM
  • Perfectly timed- I'm "back on track" starting this week, and am still at te warm-up stage, but am already feeling better (psychologically, it's amazing what knowing you're making progress does for the self-image!). Thankfully, it is summer, and most of my eercise at this point is of necessity (weekdeating, push mowing the yard, gardening) but it's a great way to get back on track. Thanks for the motivational article!! Mental readiness is a big part of this! - 7/3/2015 8:03:42 AM
  • I wish some of these articles could be written by chronically depressed people who still managed to be successful with weight loss. Tips from people like that would be helpful. - 3/25/2015 11:02:01 AM
  • 2METOO
    When you are in physical pain it is hard to get motivated. Just like the make up to get rid of the wrinkles, they are still there. Get some 60+ year olds to do some slow exercises or Sitercises
    . - 2/16/2015 9:15:57 AM
    I already know these ideas, but it's very good to read them again when you need help. - 11/1/2014 9:14:06 PM
  • thankyou for these tips just as I was starting to go backwards. its not easy when you miss a week and you start thinking bad about it. Now I am going to get up and start again well done. - 10/31/2014 4:05:04 AM
  • These are good tips. However, I seem to be getting confused about many of the articles. You say "5 minutes are better than nothing". Yet, in another article relating to hard truths about exercise, you say that if you're not doing high intensity cardio for about an hour, then you're doing nothing and you're wimping out. Now what am I supposed to believe? You can't have it both ways. Either we exercise for however much we can and get the results slower, or we have to push ourselves to the very boundary to achieve one hour of high intensity cardio. A little clarification, please. I'm very, very confused. - 10/14/2014 2:31:50 PM
  • Great list - short, simple tips. Timely! - 10/14/2014 9:53:46 AM
  • Excellent tips! This article is a keeper! I will be referring to it over and over! Thanks! - 9/16/2014 4:59:24 PM
  • Important reminders. It is easy for me to get discouraged thinking about how far I have to go. When I mess up, I tend to give up, but hopefully not for good. I had a one or two bad weeks, but I am back on track. When I played soccer with my son and his team, I realized why I want to lose weight and get in shape. Soccer would be more fun if I could breathe. my nutrition tracker and fitness trackers are my most important tools for getting there. - 9/16/2014 2:22:10 PM
  • really wish sp would update their motivational pages. some of those members haven't been active in months, years even. would be nice to get some fresh motivators. - 9/16/2014 1:05:48 PM
  • What a great article! Thinking about when I started this journey to better health, I was so motivated as I gathered up all the tools to help me. One of my foundations to better health is getting to and maintaining a healthy weight. This has been a constant battle for me. I would like to lose 10 more pounds just to give me a cushion from the 1 or 2 lbs up saga. This article suggested to make 1 change...for me that change was to not have a glass of wine with dinner. That saved me some empty calories and gave me the opportunity to drink more water. I am going to practice this all week along with my toolbox to get myself back on the winning track. - 9/2/2014 11:48:17 AM
  • Just in time! I really needed to hear these ideas. Thanks! - 8/28/2014 11:35:30 AM

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